Life On and Off an Acreage

In-sights into moving from an Acreage back to Town, plus a few things I find of interest.

Two things that horses are scared about:

1. Things that move
2. Things that don't move

December 1, 2009

Why I Enjoy My Border Collie... Determination and Loyalty

Here is one that James Hogg told of his own dog, Sirrah:

I was a shepherd for ten years on the same farm, where I had...about 700 lambs put under my weaning-time. As they were of breed, the breaking of them was a very ticklish and difficult task. I was obliged to watch them night and day for the first four days, during which I had always a person to assist me. It happened one year, that just about midnight the lambs broke and came up the moor upon us, making a noise with their running louder than thunder. We got up and waved our plaids, and shouted, in hopes to turn them, but we only made matters worse...and by our exertions we cut them into three divisions.

I called out [to my dog] 'Sirrah, my man, they're away'...but owing to the darkness of the night, and the blackness of the moor, I never saw him at all...I ran here and there, not knowing what to do, but always at intervals, gave a loud whistle to Sirrah, to let him know that I was depending on him...We both concluded, that whatever way the lambs ran at first, they would finally land at the fold where they left their mothers, and...we bent our course towards that; but when we came there, we found nothing of them.

My companion then bent his course towards the farm...and I ran away westward for several miles, along the wild track where the lambs had grazed while following their dams. We met after it was day...but neither of us had been able to discover our lambs, nor any traces of them...We had nothing for it but to return to our master, and inform him that we had lost his whole flock of lambs.

On our way home, however, we discovered a body of lambs at the bottom of a deep ravine...and the indefatigable Sirrah standing in front of them, looking all around for some relief, but still standing true to his charge...When we first came in view of them, we concluded that it was one of the divisions of the lambs...But what was our astonishment, when we discovered that not one lamb of the whole flock was wanting! How had he got all the divisions collected in the dark is beyond my comprehension. The charge was left entirely to himself from midnight until the rising of the sun; and if all the shepherds in the Forest had been there to have assisted him, they could not have effected it with greater propriety.


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